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Author: admin, 24.01.2015The type of dog typicallly affected by grass seeds is the spaniel (pictured) but Jack Russells, Westies and basically all breeds possessing hairy ears and feet are at risk if walked in meadows or woodlands where these grasses commonly grow in abundance. But more often than not, the grass seed has already burrowed its way into your dog’s foot and now requires heavy sedation or even a general anaesthetic to attempt to locate and hopefully extract this most frustrating of foreign bodies.
As grass seeds are made from vegetable matter they’re invisible on X-Ray (unlike bone or metal) so their exact location within the paw is usually a mystery. The second most common place for these seeds to cause problems is down the ear canal, as once again their unidirectional nature and shape makes pretty sure that by the time your dog is on the examination table, the grass seed has already worked its way from the fur around the ears down along the ear canal, and come to rest right up against the delicate ear drum.
It’s no wonder that these dogs usually present frantically pawing and rubbing the affected ear on the ground, and find it incredibly painful to touch or even examine the ear with an auroscope to even confirm the diagnosis. Every inch of your dog should be routinely checked after returning home from every walk and checked for grass seeds, as there are a few other places on your dog’s anatomy, including eyelids and lip folds, where they can get stuck and cause similar problems. Our poor English springer spaniel has been afflicted by the apparently harmless grass seeds.
My poor Golden doodle – Riley, has been under general anesthetic today and had grass seeds removed from both his armpits, I feel so bad for being ingnorant to these dreaded seeds !!!! Thankfully the vet managed to retrieve both seeds, one was in the foot between the toes and the other was still in the abcess.
My cocker spaniel recently had a problem with his back left paw and went from constantly licking it to not being able to put it to the floor, we took him straight to the vets who found a small entry point between his toes where he said a grass seed was probably in there. Wood Green, The Animals Charity, today, calls on us all to help ensure dogs do not lose their lives as a result of our ignorant behavior. The vet diagnosed it as a foreign body, most likely a grass seed (after antibiotics and salt water washes failed to work) and put him under anaesthetic to retrieve it. It fits over his ears perfectly, and though it looks a little odd, he can still hear everything, and more importantly, the seeds can’t get in.
I now tell everyone I know about these dreaded grass seeds , we had no idea that he even had anything wrong until I noticed him licking his paw so much and when I checked it saw his paw was pretty swollen. We were sure he was wrong as we had never heard anything like this before and he is 5 years old and has always loved running in long grass. If you see these grasses growing in a field, avoid exercising your dog there if you possibly can. However, they said they wanted to put him out and investigate, which they did much to my reluctance, I was so upset when I had to leave him at the vets but even more upset when we went to get him and they told us they had found bits of grass but no seed after looking for 2 hours!
Retrose (backwards facing) barbs along the ancillary spikes use a ratchet effect to propel the seed very rapidly through the skin, and into the flesh of the animal.
Mother Nature is a brilliant architect because she designs all of her creations to be able to survive and reproduce effectively in their environment.Wild grasses are designed to produce seeds that when dry, are scattered by wind or carried by animals to new locations where they can carry on their cycle of growth and reproduction. My previous spaniel was golden and the seeds were so well camouflaged it was a regular problem.
They saw something in the back of the eye and operated and found a 2cm grass seed and removed it.
Of course I lost it and so I continued to soak his paw like they told me and one day noticed something sticking out of the top of his paw, so I picked him up and my husband pulled out the dredded grass seed! Left unattended these seeds will continue their journey until they exit the animal or puncture a vital organ causing serious illness or death.
In nature, the drive to reproduce represents survival and some types of grass seeds are designed to survive at all costs. We received a phone call 2 hours later to tell us they had found a tiny GRASS SEED embedded on his ear wall.
The vet visit ran us close to 500.00 and all they did was make a hole in my dogs paw and incorrectly diagnose him , very upsetting ! If you live in an area with these grass seeds it is worth having one on standby in your first aid kit, simply follow the instructions on the packet. Foxtails and related grasses are one class of plant that perfectly fits this description.These grasses contain their seeds in the bushy ended head of the grass stalk.
I urge anyone who has a dog susceptible to grass seed to please check your dog regularly, I certainly will from now on for sure, I would hate anyone else to have to go through this horrible situation.
He has to go back first thing in the morning to be sedated to have the grass seeds removed. As the grass seeds ripen and the plants begin to dry out, these seeds are released for distribution through scattering. What makes some of these grass seeds so dangerous is the overly effective torpedo headed design of the seeds and the razor sharp barbs on them.The purpose of the one way pointing barbs is to assist with the job of penetrating the soil as soon as the seeds come loose from the pod head and for keeping the seed anchored firmly into the ground while the sprouting and rooting process is taking place.
It is this same burrowing action caused by these relentless barbs that can make these grasses so deadly for dogs, especially for the well furred Snow Dogs.Burrowing Into Your HuskyThese spiked seeds are perfectly adapted for powerfully clinging to animals or humans for the purposes of dispersal. When it has cooled enough to touch, place it on the site that the grass seed penetrated and hold in place with a piece of clean muslin, cheesecloth or handkerchief.
The movement of animal causes the one way movement of the seed head via the barbs to burrow deeper and deeper into the fur of the animal.In shorter haired animals the seeds are more likely to eventually become dislodged and the seed then uses the barbs to continue burrowing its way into the ground.
The grass seeds make their way up though the dogs coat and embed themselves into their skin. I remain very distressed to see my big strong boy so reduced by a seemingly harmless seed and have cancelled my holiday to look after him. The embedded seed can cause a serious infection or even death if it should go unnoticed and untreated.These seeds are most likely to embed themselves between the well furred toes of your Husky, and also into ears, nose, mouth, under belly, or even into the genital cavities of your dog. The long fur and double coat of the Husky makes the seeds difficult to spot and even harder to detect if one of these seeds have burrowed their way under the skin of your dog.
Keeping grass and weeds under control at home with a combination of mowing, removal and poisoning can reduce the number of seeds that the dog is exposed to. So once home make sure you do a thorough check of your dog from head to toe particularly paying attention to in between the toes, armpits, ears and groin areas and removing any grass seeds seen on the dog. Later an oozing infection and visible lump will occur.Once a seed has burrowed under the skin of your dog, it nearly always requires a surgical procedure to remove it. Matted coats can hide grass seeds and infections, so by keeping the coat Matt free we can easily identify any changes to our dogs skin. Not all grass seeds are barbed and dangerous to your dog but you should definitely find out what varieties of barbed grass seeds are native to your area.Eliminate these grasses from your yard.
Removing the grass seeds before they burrow can save you a lot of grief and your dog a lot of pain.If you regularly walk through wilderness areas with your dog, consider giving your Husky a Paw-di-cure.
Trim the furry areas between the toes to make it harder for barbed seeds to become caught there. Also make sure that you do a thorough foot check on your Husky every time you have been walking through a grassy wilderness area.If you are frequently walking through these areas, you may wish to consider investing in a mesh hood for your dog. If infection and swelling is already present or the grass seed has gone into the skin to deep a trip to the vet sooner rather than later is advised.
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